You know that saying about all your Chrismases coming at once? Gemma Tattersall must know exactly what it means after she won her first five-star today at Chedington Bicton Horse Trials – and then got engaged.
Gemma was taking part in the press conference in the middle of the public tradestand area alongside second and third-placed rider Pippa Funnell and Piggy March, when her boyfriend Gary Stevens said he had a question – and asked Gemma to marry him.
Compère Nicole Brown asked him to repeat himself, just to be sure.
“Gemma, will you be my wife?” he asked.
There wasn’t a dry eye in sight as Gemma hugged Gary and then Pippa and Pippa congratulated the pair.
“We could be the bridesmaids!” laughed Piggy, indicating Pippa and herself flanking Gemma on the press conference stools.
Gemma had caught Pippa’s bouquet of flowers when she threw it as they were leaving the podium during the prize-giving, which was perhaps prophetic as whoever catches the bride’s flowers at a wedding is meant to be next to marry.
Just before Gary proposed, Piggy had been saying that she knew how Gemma felt in taking her first five-star title, having won Badminton Horse Trials herself in 2019.
“This was Gemma’s day and she totally deserved it,” said Piggy. “I’d have liked to have beaten her, don’t get me wrong – I was giving it a go!”
Piggy’s own marriage was also linked to her first five-star win as she and Tom March tied the knot in June 2019, at a surprise wedding which was billed to guests as a Badminton celebration party.
Gemma won Bicton five-star riding the home-bred Chilli Knight, with Pippa Funnell second on Billy Walk On and Piggy March third on Vanir Kamira.
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